A good friend of ours narrowly escaped with his life after a Cat he was crewing
on flipped in those same waters. He and another survivor spent a long time inside the port and starboard fore deck lockers. He wrote the whole story afterwards and pointred out the reason for the capsize
and the lessons learned. Unfortunately the skipper
was never seen again.
running fore-aft were useless as the waves crashed over them, they were washed to the stern which was sunk to about 8 feet underwater. He suggested that the jacklines
should run athwartships.
Survival on the exposed upturned bridge deck would not have been possible even if the jacklines were so rigged, due to the pounding of breaking surf. The upturned cat is very sluggish and will not rise to each wave, he said that half the time, they would have been under green water
When the helicopter with rescue
swimmer had winched them on board, the flight engineer/winch operator told them to observe the upturned hull
, white hull with blue anti-fouling
. As the helo climbed and left the scene, they had visual for less than 20 seconds, and then could not make it out on the blue sea with white waves. He suggests that all bridgedecks are painted day-glo orange underneath.
The reason for the capsize was that they were hand steering
to avoid broaching, a tiresome and concentration intensive task doing over 12 knots under bare poles and running before. J had just turned in after handing over to the skipper. He said "I removed my foul weather gear
flopped into bed
and turned out the light, there was a violent yaw, the autopilot alarm
sounded and then the cabin
turned around me and I landed on my knees on the cabin
They surmise that the skipper had put the autopilot
on in order to relieve himself, but it could not respond fast enough to prevent the broach.
Glad these two are OK and perhaps some lessons to learn. An upside down Cat is not a place to be in foul weather. It will float stern down if it has engines.